1965 India Pakistan War

On 5th August 1965, the second Indo-Pak war began. This war was fought over Kashmir and was initiated by Pakistan when the Line of Control (LOC) was crossed by around 30000 Pakistani troops dressed as locals. The war concluded on 23rd September 1965.
The 1965 Indo-Pakistani war, also known as the Second Kashmir War, was the result of a series of skirmishes between India and Pakistan between April 1965 and September 1965. The war was the second battle between India and Pakistan over the Kashmir region. It is widely agreed that the war started after the failure of "Operation Gibraltar" by Pakistan, which was planned to penetrate and conquer Jammu and Kashmir.
In the Rann of Kutch, a desolate region in the Indian state of Gujarat, war broke out between India and Pakistan.
After the US and the Soviet Union began peace negotiations, the United Nations ordered an end to the war. The Tashkent Declaration, a peace treaty, was signed by India and Pakistan in January 1966 in which they agreed to return occupied territories, withdraw troops, and return to the boundaries defined in 1949.

  • Pakistani troops on 5th August 1965 posing as Kashmiri locals crossed the Loc intending to start an insurgency among the locals of Jammu and Kashmir against the Indian army and government.
  • This strategy of infiltration and starting an insurgency in Kashmir was done with a motive to gain control over Kashmir. This plan was named Operation Gibraltar. The mistake that Pakistan made was that it thought that India is weak at the moment as it had recently fought and lost a war to China. This made Pakistan conclude that India will not be able to strike back against Pakistan’s infiltration and defend Kashmir.
  • Operation Gibraltar was a failure as the presence of Pakistanis was reported by the locals themselves to the Indian authorities. The Indian Army retaliated and captured Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) Haji Pir Pass. 
  • Pakistan then launched its Operation Grand Slam on 1st September to capture the town of Akhnoor in Jammu. Although this move took the Indian Army by surprise, Pakistan was not able to capture Akhnoor. 
  • On 6th September, India crossed the international border (the Radcliffe Line), marking the official beginning of the war. In the Lahore district of Pakistan, the Indian Army captured certain areas. Unlike the previous 1947-48 conflict, this war was fought on many fronts, including in Rajasthan. This war also saw, for the first time, aerial combat between India and Pakistan.
The codename given to Pakistan's strategy to infiltrate Jammu and Kashmir was Operation Gibraltar which was also to begin a rebellion against Indian rule. Pakistan was hoping to gain control over Kashmir if successful, but the operation resulted in a major failure. This name was specifically chosen by Pakistan to draw a parallel to the Arab invasion of Spain launched from the port of Gibraltar.
A key operation in the 1965 Indo-Pakistani War was Operation Grand Slam. It refers to a plan to attack the vital Akhnoor Bridge in Jammu and Kashmir constructed in May 1965 by the Pakistan Army. The bridge was the lifeline of Jammu and Kashmir and the Pakistan army thought that this could be used to threaten Jammu which was an important logistics point for the Indian Army. As the stated military goals were not achieved, the operation ended in a defeat for the Pakistan Army, and they were subsequently forced to withdraw following a counterattack by the Indian Army.
  • The war ended on 23 September 1965, after the United Nations Security Council called on India and Pakistan for an unconditional ceasefire.
  • To prevent further escalation of the conflict, both the USA and the USSR intervened diplomatically.
  • Though Pakistan claims otherwise, the war was a victory for India. They did not succeed in their stated goal of 'liberating Kashmir.'
  • After the war, both countries agreed to return each other's territory. India had an area of 1840 sq.km, while Pakistan had 540 sq.km.
  • India had 3000 military casualties, while there were 3800 in Pakistan.
  • In January 1966, ceasefire negotiations were hosted by the USSR in Tashkent (now in Uzbekistan), leading to the Tashkent Agreement. Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and Pakistani President Ayub Khan were the signatories to this agreement.
  • Then-Prime Minister of India Lal Bahadur Shastri died following a heart attack in Tashkent. His death was quite controversial and his death is still a mystery.
  • India and Pakistan were compelled by this agreement to return the annexed areas to each other.
  • Officially, due to international diplomatic pressure, the war ended in a stalemate, but India emerged victorious, considering the losses suffered by Pakistan.
  • There was a lot of protest from the people and the military in India when India agreed to the ceasefire, who believed a decisive victory might have been possible.
The Tashkent Agreement, signed by India's Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and Pakistan's President Ayub Khan, ended the 17-day August-September 1965 war between Pakistan and India. In Sept. 1965, a cease-fire was secured by the United Nations Security Council. Soviet Premier Aleksey Kosygin, who had invited the parties to Tashkent, negotiated the deal. With this agreement, India and Pakistan announced their firm resolve to restore their countries' usual and friendly relations. They take into account the achievement of the following targets for the welfare of the people of India and Pakistan.
Important Provisions in the Tashkent Agreement:
  • The Prime Minister of India and the President of Pakistan agree that, under the Charter of the United Nations, both parties will make every effort to create good neighbourly relations between India and Pakistan. 
  • Both parties agreed that all armed personnel of the two countries should withdraw their positions by 25 February 1966 at the latest and that both sides should observe the terms of the cease-fire on the cease-fire line.
  • It was agreed that relations between India and Pakistan should be based on the principle that there should be no interference in each other's internal affairs.
  • It was agreed that both sides would discourage any propaganda directed against the other country and encourage propaganda that would encourage friendly relations between the two countries to develop.
  • It was also agreed that India's High Commissioner to Pakistan and Pakistan's High Commissioner to India would return to their posts and that diplomatic missions from both countries would be restored to normal functioning. The Vienna Convention of 1961 on diplomatic intercourse is observed by both governments.
  • Both parties have agreed to consider measures to restore economic and commercial relations, communications, and cultural exchanges between India and Pakistan, and to take measures to implement existing agreements between India and Pakistan.
  • It was agreed that, on matters of direct concern to both countries, the parties would continue meetings both at the highest and at other levels. Both sides recognized the need to establish joint Indian-Pakistani bodies to report to their governments to decide what further steps should be taken.

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